Roger Ebert: Rush ‘should be horse-whipped’ for Haiti comments
“You should be horse-whipped for the insult you have paid to the highest office of our nation.”
That’s how Chicago Sun-Times film critic Roger Ebert began his letter to Rush Limbaugh, in which Ebert rakes the radio host over the coals for his controversial comments about the Haiti earthquake.
Ebert, better known for his stints as co-host of Siskel & Ebert and Ebert & Roeper than for his political diatribes, criticized Limbaugh for suggesting earlier this week that donations made to Haiti through the White House Web site would be stolen by the administration.
“Would you trust the money’s gonna go to Haiti?” Limbaugh asked caller Justin.
“No,” Justin replied.
“But would you trust that your name’s gonna end up on a mailing list for the Obama people to start asking you for campaign donations for him and other causes?” Limbaugh asked.
“Absolutely,” the caller replied.
“Absolutely,” Limbaugh said, adding that “we’ve already donated to Haiti. It’s called the US income tax.”
“I went to Obama’s web site, and discovered the link there leads directly to the Red Cross,” Ebert wrote. “I can think of a reason why anyone might want to go via the White House. That way they can be absolutely sure they’re clicking on the Red Cross and not a fake site set up to exploit the tragedy.”
Ebert ended his letter with a stinging criticism: “You have a sizable listening audience. You apparently know how to please them. Anybody given a $400 million contract must know what he is doing. That’s what offends me. You know exactly what you’re doing.”
This isn’t the first time this month that Ebert has gone after Limbaugh. After the radio host was rushed to hospital with chest pains over the holidays, Ebert Tweeted jokes about Limbaugh’s weight. “Hawaii is the only country where the Hawaiian shirts come in S, M, L, XL, Rush, and Sumo,” Ebert wrote in one Tweet.
He later offered “sincere apologies” for the jokes.
For his part, Limbaugh has taken heat from the White House on down for his comments this week about Haiti. Limbaugh told his listeners that the Obama administration will use the Haiti tragedy “to burnish their, shall we say, credibility with the black community, in the light-skinned and black-skinned community in this country. … It’s made to order for them.”
That led to angry calls from listeners, including one from April in Kentucky, who asked him where he got the “cojones” to “dismiss” the Haitian earthquake.
“You’re a blockhead,” Limbaugh said. “It is irritating people like you that I revel in. … You’ve got tampons in your ears.”